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New Single on the Way from Brady Kenneth

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Brady Kenneth is releasing a new single, followed by a string other releases throughout 2021. Brady Kenneth

Brady Kenneth, acclaimed local country music artist, is set to release his new single, “I Hope You Get Drunk,” coming out March 12.

Kenneth is a frequent performer at festivals across Manitoba and was selected as a finalist for the Boots & Hearts Emerging Artist competition in 2019. Later that same year, he was nominated for the Manitoba Country Music Association’s Emerging Artist Award. In 2020, his five-song EP entitled “Movin’ On” was released on Spotify, and Kenneth is now looking forward to more releases in 2021.

This latest new song is part of a strategy for the singer to compile a “slow release” album by putting out a new single every few weeks.

“With everything being online now, consumers tend to get bored quickly and easily,” Kenneth says. “So I think it’s far better to grab their attention with one great song at a time, as opposed to spending months and tens, if not hundreds of thousands, of dollars on a full album that ends up having only three songs that get heard.”

The full artistic vision for the upcoming collection is undetermined, but the first of the new songs focuses on a typical source of inspiration: lost love.

“‘I Hope You Get Drunk’ is essentially a song about hoping your ex comes back,” he explains. “Or if not, then at least has a lapse in judgment and gives you some false hope for a night.”

The songwriter acknowledges the title may raise some eyebrows, but he says it’s not his intention to glamorize drunkenness.

“The message is less about actually drinking and getting drunk, and much more about hoping your ex comes back to you. It’s just a really clever and new way of saying it,” says Kenneth. “And that’s exactly what country music is—finding new and clever ways of saying the same thing over and over. Because people can relate to it. I think all songs should be taken and interpreted with somewhat of a grain of salt. I feel like just because some songs portray drinking and getting drunk as fun or even ‘cool,’ it doesn’t mean that’s the intended message. I would say that everyone has a choice in what they listen to. If you don’t like it, don’t listen to it. Simple as that.”

Kenneth’s frankness only underscores his relatability. In a time when most music genres have seen a decrease in streaming listenership since the pandemic began, country music, according to many online sources, is the only genre to have grown.

“The genre has averaged 11.1 percent more plays since mid-March,” reads a claim from The Atlantic.1 One theory to explain this is the unifying human experience inherent in country music’s most common themes. The same article refers to how common it is to have “cravings for the regular ol’ times.”

During the pandemic, Kenneth has been able to find a few bright spots despite facing the same challenges many artists are up against.

“Country music has grown so much in recent years and is appealing to all ages and ranges of audiences, but yeah, it’s definitely been a challenge for all artists this year,” he says. “For example, [in] this song all of the instrumentation was recorded separately by session artists in their own home studios. It’s definitely nice to have that ability [to perform and record] digitally and online. I think that’s how most musicians are recording and collaborating during all this. Then I was able to fly to Calgary, to a very remote studio, OCL Studios, where just myself and my producer, two-time CCMA producer of the year Jeff Dalziel, recorded my vocals. At that time, Calgary wasn’t shut down yet, so we got them in just in time.”

COVID-19 challenges aside, Kenneth is transparent about the challenge of staying motivated to work on his music and find inspiration during the long Manitoba winters.

“As a person who’s dealt with a certain anxiety my whole life, winter can definitely be especially difficult,” says Kenneth. “On the other hand, it can inadvertently get you more focused on music since there’s less to do. And literally, there was nothing else to do this year. I’m naturally a homebody and don’t mind being there, by myself for days, even weeks at a time.”

Pandemic restrictions mean isolation currently continues without a clear end in sight for many areas of North America, and many artists are already projecting the impact this will have on festival season. Manitoba typically has a vast number of outdoor performing opportunities all summer long at fairs and festivals.

“I support whatever is safe and realistic. It’s been a tough year for artists and many other industries. And it’s not over yet. So I think if we can keep a positive and hopeful attitude, and do what we can when we can, things will eventually start looking up. It’s kind of out of our control anyway.”

Even though he doesn’t yet have any confirmed 2021 performance dates, Kenneth is looking into new ways to arrange performances at smaller or more socially distanced venues.

“Unfortunately, it’s looking like another year of minimal performances, especially fairs and festivals,” he says. “If that suddenly changes, I’ll be there! Other than that, we are definitely looking into a few things. If restrictions ease up a bit over spring, I look forward to booking more private, outdoor, socially distanced house shows.”

His hopeful attitude stems from his commitment to hard work and is a message to anyone struggling through these darker days.

“I like the quote by Pablo Picasso: ‘Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.’ Sure, sometimes—and rarely—great ideas and inspiration just pop into your head, but ultimately great things come from hard work. Pick up your guitar even when you don’t feel a thing. You might write a hit.”

You can find ‘I Hope You Get Drunk’ and all other Brady Kenneth songs on Spotify and Apple Music, and follow him on Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok.

For more information

1 Spencer Kornhaber, “Country Music Can No Longer Hide Its Problems,” The Atlantic. July 15, 2020 (https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2020/07/country-music-pandemic-protests-the-chicks-gaslighter/614092).

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